tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN December 24, 2014 10:41pm-1:01am EST
there is a tragic amount of bigotry about people of the muslim faith. originated ony september 11. throughout public policy. people at treat the is nothingbay, cuba, less than despicable. maintaining guantanamo is no different than what we did in world war ii in maintaining the concentration camps for japanese-americans. that is all driven by a suspicion of the muslim faith. when you see legislatures like those in texas passing laws that to, courts are forbidden
make any judgments based on sharia law, the chance that any muslim, however devout and ofceful in his or her view public life, there is no way the senate of the u.s. as presently composed and composed anyway we can anticipate for the next muslim wouldhat a get appointed to the supreme court and confirmed. >> let's start with the lower courts and try to work up. >> we have muslims in the house. that is an important breakthrough. and perhaps ime, should not be saying this because i am a guy. there was a time when there were not many women in congress. increasingly, the country has discovered the virtue of the feminine perspective.
we are getting more women appropriately and we now have three women on the supreme court, which is the high point for that sector of our society. i don't think in my lifetime, which is not that much longer, who will not see a muslim on the we will not see a muslim on the court. >> one must question. -- last question. >> it seems like we have a people of -- a fear of people putting religion into the opinion. can we talk about religious -- what is the beauty of the religious diversity of the supreme court? >> positive aspects of this religious diversity? we have covered some of them.
anybody want to add anything? >> diversey itself, however you define it, is virtuous. there are different ways to apply and defying the law. we are a long way away from what used to be called mechanistic jerk -- jurisprudence where you say the law is on most like a mathematical proposition. intellectual,any evenral, social logical, economic inputs in making a sound legal judgment. the more input you have from a variety of experiences, a variety of backgrounds -- including a variety of religious inths -- the better the law substance is going to be. if any president has the option of enlarging the diversity of did inrt, as wilson
premade you on the court, -- putting a jew on the court and reagan did by putting a woman on the court, i hope they take that opportunity. >> if no one else has anything -- [laughter] [applause] nadine and i want to thank everybody. >> thank you so much, everyone, for coming. for being on the wonderful panel. amy, it has been a fascinating conversation. please join us in the other room. thank you. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2014] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] >> on the next washington journal, rebecca berg on the
next presidential race. public diplomacy and pop culture shaping america abroad.america's role here's a look at some of the programs you will find christmas day on the c-span network. atiday festivities start 10:00 a.m. eastern with the lighting of the national christmas tree followed by the white house christmas decorations with michelle obama. and the letting of the -- lighting of the capitol christmas tree. and then samuel alito. of jeb bush on the bill rights and founding fathers. on c-span two venture into the art of good writing. ad the feminist side of
superhero. p.m., -- and on american history tv, follow the berlin fromwith speeches presidents john kennedy and ronald reagan. how they represented the styles of the time. at 10:00, former nbc anchor on his more than 50 years of reporting on world events. that is on christmas day to read for a complete schedule, go to c-span.org. sunday on q and a, glenn kessler on the biggest pinocchio's of 2014. democrats tend to get a little more upset.
i think they have bought into the myth of the liberal media. they think the media is on their side. whereas republicans, they kind they are not going to be treated fairly. i think, i hope over the last four years, i have done enough back and forth, both parties with equal fervor. so people will come to grudgingly say, you are someone we can do business with. c,know the senate majority pa affiliated with harry reid, they stopped answering my questions midway through the campaign season. they were not getting
>> in the ruins of the old coventry cathedral is a sculpture of a man and woman reaching out to embrace each other. the sculpture was inspired by the story of a woman who crossed europe on foot after the war to find her husband. casts of the same sculpture can be found in belfast and berlin. it is simply called, reconciliation. reconciliation is the peaceful end to conflict. we were reminded of this in august, when countries on both sides of the first world war came together to remember in peace. poppies at the tower of london drew millions.
the only possible reaction to walking among them was silence. for every puppy, a life and a reminder of the grief of loved ones left behind. no one who fought in the war is still alive, but we remember their sacrifice. sacrificecretary's -- of those who fought and protect us today. in 1914, many people thought the war would be over by christmas. end, the trenches were dug and the shape of the war was set. something remarkable did happen that christmas, exactly 100 years ago today. without any instruction or stopped the shooting and german and british soldiers met in no man's land.
progress were taken and gifts exchanged. it was a christmas truce. this is not a new idea to read in the ancient world, a true's was declared for the duration of the big games. a truce was declared for the duration of the olympic games. sport has a wonderful way of bringing together people and nations as we saw in glasgow when over 70 countries took part in the commonwealth games. that they areent known as the friendly games. as well as promoting dialogue between nations, the theonwealth games include paris ports. asports. the talent and conviction of the athletes captured our
attention as well is breaking down divisions. the benefits were clear to see when i visited belfast in june. the -- myt to her of tour of the set of "game of thrones" might have gotten the most attention, my visit to the prison remains in my memory. it is a reminder of what is possible when people reach out to one another. rather like the couple in the sculpture. takesrse, reconciliation different forms. in scotland, after the referendum, many felt disappointment. others felt great belief. bridging these differences will take time. bringing reconciliation to war or emergency zones is even
harder. i have been deeply touched this year by the selfishness -- selflessness of aid workers and fallen tears who have gone abroad to help terms of cloth -- conflict or diseases like ebola, often at personal risk. for me, the life of jesus christ, a prince of peace, whose birth we celebrate today, is an inspiration and anchor in my life. a role model of reconciliation and forgiveness. he stretched out his hands in love, acceptance, and healing. taught mexample has to seek, respect, and value all people of whatever faith. sometimes it seems reconciliation stands little chance in the face of war and discord. as the christmas truce, a
peacey ago, reminds us, and goodwill have lasting power in the hearts of men and women. on that chilly christmas eve in 1914, many of the german forces saying "silent night." the haunting melody inching across the line. the carol is still loved today, a legacy of the christmas truce. a reminder to us all that even in the unlikeliest of places, hope can still be found. a very happy christmas to you all. ♪
thenal, rebecca berg on 2016 presidential race and potential campaigns by jeb bush. we will talk to boston college professor bayles. washington journal is live with your phone calls and tweets every morning on c-span at 7:00 a.m.. >> here's a look at some of the problems does programs you will find christmas day. -- some of the programs you will find on christmas day. lighting of the capitol christmas tree. just after 12:30, celebrity s talk about their causes. and then samuel alito and jeb
bush to read on c-span2, venture into the art of good writing with steve pinker. see the feminist side of a superhero. on american history tv on c-span3, at 8:00 a.m. eastern, the fault of the berlin wall. kennedyeches from john and ronald reagan. fashion experts on first lady fashion choices and how they represent the styles of the times. and nbc news anchor tom brokaw on his more than 50 years of reporting on world events. that is christmas day on c-span. for a complete schedule, go to c-span.org. >> coming up, author shane war." on his book, "at
then a conversation on the death penalty with activists who oppose capital punishment. and then a look at the film industry and conservatism. the authorack with of a new book, "at war." "@war: the rise of the military-internet complex ." the timing of this could not be more relevant. let's begin with north korea. what do we know about their internet going down? who was behind that? guest: it is still an open question, although some people would be motivated to think it is the u.s. government. taking down north korea's internet is not that technically hard because there are so few connections they have. it is really quite vulnerable in that way. this comes three days after president obama promised a
proportional response to the hacking, which he publicly blamed on north korea. the united states would have a motive. so far we are not taking credit for it. legal experts say it would fit in that proportional response, so we do not know for sure. but active groups -- activist groups have claimed credit for this. we may not know for a while, is the straightforward answer. it looks like their internet is coming back up, but the timing is certainly more than curious. host: let's look at what the state department spokeswoman had to say when asked if the u.s. was responsible. >> we are considering a range of options in response. we will not discuss publicly operational details about the possible response options or comment on those kind of reports. except to say that as we implement our responses, some will be seen, some may not be seen. i cannot confirm those reports, but in general, that is what the president has spoken to.
host: how would you describe that answer? guest: the classic washington nondenial denial. what she was also saying in that statement, it fits very much with the idea that a proportional response, those being the key words, are what the administration is looking for. taking down the internet of north korea, as dramatic as that sounds, may be a proportional response because no physical damage is done, you are just attacking computers. it is possible this is some and that fits within the realm of the kinds of things you would expect the u.s. to do in response to the sony attack. host: does it matter? what does north korea say in response? guest: we have not heard much from north korea in terms of whether they were responsible for the event in the first place. the country does not have widespread internet access, so if you take out the internet, you are only affecting the elites, party members, government elites, some media.
most north koreans have never been on the internet, so it would not affect them at all. this could be the beginning of what would be called an information operational campaign instead of a propaganda campaign, where we attempt to manipulate information in north korea, we can cut off access to communications. this is about sending a message not to the country but to the few people who can get online and are running things. host: "the washington times" reported yesterday that the state media of north korea sunday night put out a statement, that "the army and people of north korea are fully ready to stand in confrontation with the u.s. in all war spaces, including cyber warfare space." guest: they are doing this because it is a domain cyberspace where they know they can compete with other large powers, where they can flex their muscles and be aggressive, much more so than they would in a conventional military setting. so even by taking on the united
states, what they're trying to say is that we are not defenseless, we are prepared to strike back and defend ourselves if we are attacked. very much the war of words that they have displayed in this space before. now what you have is the possibility that they were hit, so what do they do? if they came out and blames united states, you would expect the north koreans to retaliate in some way. history would tell us they will look for some other provocative measure to take the signal back to us, that you cannot just do this. host: your book is about the rise of the internet military complex. how does it compare north korea's military internet contacts and our own? guest: one of the most powerful cyber forces in the world would be us, the chinese, the russians, and the israelis are very sophisticated in this area. north korea is in the second
tier of cyber power, and people have been joking in the past few days, how could north korea have launched a sophisticated attack on sony when they practically have no internet? to some extent they rely on hackers and other countries. a lot are in china and sort of farm this out. they are not the most sophisticated and skill, but they are highly aggressive. they have demonstrated that they are willing to use these offensive cyber techniques against other countries, including south korea, that offend the regime or that they feel are rivaling them in some way, or maybe are strategic adversaries. and now they have done this in the united states and that escalates it. not as powerful and strong, but they're willing to use it, at least publicly in ways that countries have not done. host: you write that the u.s. military views cyber warfare as the fifth domain of war. what does that mean, and what sort of resources are going toward this? guest: we are pouring billions into it right now. cyber security is one area of
the defense and military budget that is growing, not being cut. the other 4 -- air, land, sea, and outer space. the military is trained and we have doctrine for offensive and defensive fighting. cyberspace is the fifth domain, and military services are training up generations of cyber offenders and attackers, hackers, soldiers who will work alongside their colleagues who are flying planes and driving tanks and sailing ships. cyber becomes another component of how we fight wars, both in terms of propaganda against enemies, knocking out there to medications systems. systems.comminication even the kinds of things that we're seeing with north korea, you can imagine -- if we were able to go to war with a country
like north korea, we would want to sever to sever communications systems and knock it off line. this is something we will see in the future labor, i think. host: how does the military recruit that type of soldier and compete with silicon valley and compete with those who want that type of worker? guest: they try to compete with people who come into services. one was spotted early on. he had a background in math and physics and was routed into the intelligence line of work in the military. that is where they are recruiting a lot these people from. but the nsa, the national security agency, has gone to hacker conferences to recruit people. the nsa helps colleges right curriculum for computer science students and will pay in some cases for you to get a four-year degree in computer science if you will come to work as a hacker to pay back the debt. but the competition with silicon valley and the financial sector is fierce. people can make vastly more
money doing cyber security work for a company, either working at a company or for one of the private security contractors we are seeing. the military will be behind the curve for a long time. they can promise a level of excitement and interesting job that maybe you would not get as much in the private sector. host: we are talking with shane harris, author of the new book "@war: the rise of the military-internet complex." taking your comments, in light of what we have seen with the north korea incident with sony. republican, 202-748-8001. democrats, 202-748-8000. independents, 202-748-8002. guest: the cyber command will be
central command, wench -- which runs the war in iraq and syria. all of the offenses and defensive components, all of the expertise, the capabilities, the cyber weapons, will all reside under the authority of cyber command. the idea is that because cyber is such a particular discipline and will become such a big component of how we fight wars, the military at the end of the bush administration felt that cyber needed its own home rather than being strains and pockets of activity scattered throughout military services, so that when we do go to war and we need the cyber operators, they will be tasked out of cyber command. now it is not its own command, it is run by the director of the national security agency, which
is an intelligence agency. that has been controversial because now you have effectively a military command being run by the head of an intelligence agency, and we are mixing these two disciplines and these worlds together. our people have advised president obama, that if we want to mature are cyber capabilities and make sure they are not being run by secretive intelligence agencies, you need to split the command up and that cyber command stand on its own. it is getting there, rowing, and ultimately the military wanted to be able to be its own full-fledged command. but right now what it is is feeding the nsa and those intelligence agencies that we have learned so much about in the wake of the snowden kay's, in particular. -- the snowden leaks. that is not exactly the right mixture, because we have been -- we need to get it out of the race of the classified intelligence agency. it is governed by different parts of u.s. law. host: shane harris has written
about this in this book. and i want to ask what you have learned about cyber warfare from eric snowden. we will take your comments and questions on this as well. republicans, 202-748-8001. democrats, 202-7 48-8000. independents, 202-748-8002. what did we learn from eric snowden? guest: a lot of things. there were documents that did not get as much attention as the surveillance, the phone surveillance programs that were very telling. we wanted to learn how the nsa has been intersecting its computers around the world with what is called spyware, so that you can monitor them and control those computers. it is classic straightforward hacking. we learned a lot about the systems and the global nature of
how the nsa does that. there were blueprints for exploits, which you might think of as cyber weapons that were leaked out as well, published overseas. what we got is a glimpse into how systematic cyber operations have become for the intelligence community and how central hacking is to both the intelligence gathering mission of the nsa but also the mission to go out and try and disrupt and penetrate adversary networks. if the united states was responsible for knocking north korea offline, the expertise to do that resides in the nsa. those are the people you would task to execute that mission. the snowden documents told us a lot about how central the cyber mission has now become for the intelligence community. host: does it have a doctrine as the others do for offense and defense? guest: it is developing.
there are some rules of the road beginning to form. how it plays into the sony situation is the question of what constitutes an act of war in cyberspace. what would be an action that a country or group could take against us that would be so significant that the military would recommend that the president have some sort of response that might even involve cyber operations, a kinetic response. we do not have a lot of doctrine around that yet. it is generally agreed that a cyber attack on a system that causes physical damage, like a blackout or destruction to major communications systems, that might rise to something that the president would consider a hostile act. but the doctrine of the rules are of engagement are forming around that. we do not know the rules in other countries. when we talk to china, what would we do in your cyberspace that we would consider hostile, and here is what we would consider hostile. the chinese are not telling us a lot.
we are not having a two-way conversation. that leads to a misunderstanding. you can see how the doctrine is loose and is not gelling together. host: let's get to robert in richmond, virginia. you are on the air. caller: we as a country seem to be -- we are already in that we are all in -- we are all in everybody else's business. we are the ones -- why are we always in everyone else's business? when we do not take care of our own at home? guest: there is a big policy question in that that i do not know if i am completely qualified to answer, but you are hitting something that i write a lot about in the book.
the united states and our officials like to talk a lot about how we are at risk from other countries and how other countries are hacking into our systems, stealing our information, and trying to manipulate our infrastructure. but we are doing a lot of these things to other countries as well. we are one of the big aggressors in cyberspace, so we cannot be that surprised when another country decides to use these capabilities against us. what we can do is go out and say there are certain behaviors across a line. the chinese are notorious for hacking into american corporations and stealing data from us that goes back to their companies, and we say, well, we don't give that information to countries in our country. so we draw this line between the economic espionage they are doing and the kind that we are doing. but we are all out there taking aggressive measures, so we do not have clean hands in the space. so i do not think it is surprising to administration
officials when you see north korea getting up and becoming more aggressive because this is the people are vying for dominance, and so are we. we are part of that entire struggle. host: ray, you are next from california, an independent. caller: my question is, are you like a security trend specialist in counterfeits? i have been in security for 25 years, and my company is in detection security. you might be a security risk or security police, but i am not sure where you're going. but i am will tell you this, when you start assertions -- because assertion means you are not knowing -- and accuse other countries, especially in cyberspace, when the united states of america -- you do not have a blanket of security. two, you do not have a guard against police infringement. or a security analyst, which might be, according to my -- looking at the situation, especially individuals with no
expertise in security, security analysts -- i will tell you this. insecurity, you have to have strict. you do not have anything strict. a firm, assert, and propose. as far as all that good stuff, if i was to say in exchange for the money that you get paid, what would deter this counterfeit? because that is what it is, right? counterfeit, when you infringe -- i.t.'s, your phones, all that. it is here, not over there. host: i think we got your point. shane harris? guest: you asked me my position. i am a journalist and i write about security and talk to people in the industry.
i think you are talking about how it gets to this idea of attribution. how do you have certainty when you are asserting that other countries have done something aggressive. in the sony case, the president directly pointed the finger at north korea. north korea is responsible for this. it is extremely difficult to know in the whole space when someone is actually behind a particular event are attacked. it is interesting president obama went on television and tells us that the information we have not seen publicly revealed probably is pretty persuasive. but this is an issue in the space of trying to a trip in these particular actions to individual countries. that is very hard, and it makes retaliating for any of these tax or these acts of espionage more difficult because we cannot say with certainty who is responsible for it. host: kathy from long branch, new jersey, a democratic caller.
caller: let me tell you something. war? what is a good for? absolutely nothing. except for these people who are hard at oil -- excuse my french -- are absolutely crazy. we voted for obama because he is an antiwar person. i am not even dates of that anymore. i remember dick cheney did not even -- i were over dick cheney did nothing but lie to us back in the day. host: are we inching toward cyber wars? are we getting closer than that -- closer to that? guest: i think we are. i do not think the sony situation rises to the level of war because no physical damage was done. but let's look at the attack years ago where the u.s. and israel built a computer advisor -- a computer virus that we inserted into a new care system and cause the centrifuge equipment to spin out of control and breakdown. with that qualify as an act of war? perhaps.
it certainly was an act of sabotage, causing physical damage to another country, violating its sovereignty. these kinds of instances, you will see more of them. we are entering into a new age of cyber war. i try and draw a spectrum in the book of different kind of activities that happen in cyberspace. what looks like war is hacking that has an actual outcome. you break into a computer system to cause physical real-world damage. that is not what happened in the sony case. that is what happened in the iran case. you will be seeing a mixture of all of these kinds of events that we should be careful to classify war legally as something that has an outcome. if something is an act of war, that will prompt a different response than sabotage or basic espionage. host: here is a tweet --
how big is the industry? guest: the industry is growing, and some of the startups are companies that come in after a company has been hacked to help them clean it up, helping them putting countermeasures to make sure it does not happen again. i write in the book about copies helping to develop cyber weapons quietly. it is information that is sold to governments, that is sold to companies in some cases. there is a really booming industry around this. part of the reason is that the governments cannot protect all of the internet. for one thing, the networks in this country, 85% of them are privately owned, private properly, effectively -- private property, a tentatively -- private property, effectively. it depends on the industry to protect itself. target and home depot and sony and j.p. morgan and many more
that happened that you never hear about, the more the securities companies will look to experts in the private sector to comment and guard them at i talked to one former official is responsible for cyber security in the homeland security department, we have these -- and he said we have these massive services that are standing up that are as intelligent as the people in the intelligence agencies. many of these companies are formed by people who used to work in the military and intelligence agencies. so the industry is big and it will only become more central to all of security and cyber warfare in the future. host: in your book, you say $67 billion worldwide is spent. guest: we should emphasize that is not taking into account offensive spending by governments, classified spending by intelligence agencies, but the market for this, if you are looking at taking a valued
measure of this, it is absolutely huge and growing fast. host: thomas, your next, from humble, texas, an independent caller. caller: i was calling about the fcc and the rules and regulations. how did we get the war so wrong when we know about this information? host: if you are talking about the information in the war, let me talk about the current war that we are fighting in syria and iraq and how it pertains to cyber grade we had a lot of success in 2000 seven using hacking to get inside the communication systems, inside al qaeda and iraq. i read about how we were able to break into the networks and find all the major players. we have not had that kind of success with isis because they are not using communications in the same way. they are careful about not talking too much on the phone, careful about how they are using
e-mail. much on the phone. they have become very savvy as an adversary for how to counter our hacking and surveillance. this will become a feature of these wars in the future. every time we develop a new way to break into a system or spy on someone, they are going to develop a countermeasure for that. all of this cyber warfare is about the moves and counter moves sprint it's true and traditional military but the speed at which it's happening in cyberspace is so much greater because of the technology. i think that will become a unique aspect of how we fight wars, the need to constantly be developing moves and counter moves. host: stephen in illinois, caller, you are
next. caller: good day to you, i want to comment on the gentle man talking about why are we always in other people's business. i think we have always been a commercial nation and the world is getting smaller. i think we tried to stay out of the world's affairs in world war i. we learned a lesson in world war ii by trying to stay out of the world affairs and we were drawn into a bloody mess. it's not whether we should be involved for our own interests and the stability of the world but it's how we go about it. i think the struggle is, how do we gain partners and deal in the middle east? our engagement in the middle east could make things worse and cause our enemies to succeed. guest: you made an interesting point about how the world seems to be getting smaller. cyberspace is a great encapsulation of this idea. the barrier to entry for any country to get into building a cyber army is much lower than trying to build a maybe orfield and army or build a sophisticated modern air force.
cyberspace is your mining us how interconnected we all are and how this domain is very contested. no nation can really go toe to toe with us in a kinetic military science. plenty of countries can cause a lot of damage and do a lot to annoy us at the very least in cyberspace. it's a reminder of how small the world actually is and the potential for escalation. host: does that mean that the military/internet complex will be cheaper than the military-industrial complex? guest: it may be. at the end of the day, building cyber systems is a lot cheaper than building missile systems. the investment in it is
supported. these are not long-term projects like talking about building of militaries. there will be less money to be made in the government space. that is why i think they will turn more to the private sector. if you are a start up right now doing private cyber security, a government contract could be very lucrative and get you access to a lot of people and projects you want to work on. it's really, the money will be made in the private sector. $65 billion is a much bigger figure than what they government is spending on cyber security. the real money to be made will be on these companies selling these services to private companies and not just working for the government. that is quite different than the military-industrial complex of the past. host: "usa today" has this story --
guest: it's true, another reminder of this is a big multinational corporation, sony, brought to its knees because its security appears not to have been very good. there is an education campaign that is going on. many ceos are watching what happened to sony and wondering if they need to worry about this. it is the quest for expertise in information and more intelligence security that will keep driving the growth of this interesting -- of this industry. host: this is the opinion page of "the wall street journal."
how big of a task would that be and what does that entail? >> it would be huge and we have not been successful since the cessation of hostilities in the korean war. i think what this event reminds people of -- maybe this is what's driving the conversation -- even though north korea is this isolated country, a hermit kingdom, it has the ability to project force and influence on provocation outside what it's wait would suggest around the world. if they are in fact responsible for what happened to sony and i put a big"if" on that, look at what they have been able to do. look at the political consequences of this to say nothing of the damage to the company itself. it is a huge month -- moment that has fixated our national security establishment.
i think it's a reminder of how countries like north korea -- iran is in this category -- see cyberspace is a place for they can go and flex their muscles and cause a lot of trouble in ways that they cannot and other domains. we should expect to see more of that. i think this will absolutely focus the attention on what you do about a larger threat of north korea. you cannot just isolate the cyber problem. it's indicative of a mindset of a country. you see the latest projection of this. host: he says it will come down to china. china not only has these ties to north korea, but it also has economic ties to south korea and
that could be the answer. guest: beijing has been not too happy with the regime in north korea. this is a real moment for the obama administration to push china on this question of its relationship with north korea. on the issue of hacking, most of the internet from north korea goes through china. most of the people behind the sunny attacker probably based in china and that's one way were beijing could crackdown and that's how it will have to happen. this is an opportunity i think for the white house to start pressing for realignment about these priorities. if this was if north korea, we have a public example of why this is a country that is likely to do this again, can't necessarily be trusted to moderate its behavior and china has to worry about this, too. you don't want a rampant cyber actor in your neighborhood claiming to be one of your allies. it will not be a chinese benefit. host: we'll go to texas, an independent, you are up next.
caller: hi. host: go ahead. caller: ok, good morning. host: good morning. caller: i was wondering how i can get involved in this area. i have a fatalistic view of everything. host: you are wondering about jobs in this industry? caller: helping develop this area. guest: it's a growth area. there are government agencies and companies looking for people with expertise in computer
science and engineering and programming. we are trying now to field the next generation of hackers to defend and conduct operations offense of late. i think people who are interested in this particularly young people who are interested in this as a career will find that the kinds of places used to go to study computer science for the purpose of writing programs, this -- these may become the new incubators to do cyber security. i think it will be an exciting and interesting time for people who want to be in this field. it is growing so fast. it is so closely tied to technology which has been the economic trevor for so long. if people want to get involved in this, i would say go to a university that will have a program of computer science and you'll probably start finding the avenues are just opening up. companies are actively looking for people for cyber security. host: cortland, new york, joseph, democratic caller -- hi, joseph. one last call for joseph. let me move on to eileen, in glencoe new york, independent color.
-- caller. you are on the air. caller: hi, i'm a previous generation of what you folks are talking about. i worked at headquarters and am an air force veteran and i ran their intelligence messaging system in the late 1980's and early 1990's. i have been watching this whole thing with edward snowden with great interest. knowing what i know about what our military is capable of, i have noticed a trend in domestic surveillance purview to start singling people out based on their religion, their gender preferences, their politics. there has been this syndrome rising in the united states and all over the world called a targeted individual where people are being harassed electronically with electronic weapons, they are using more wireless technology to survey
houses. you can actually arrange a wireless perimeter around the house and you can spy on the people inside using wireless technology now. the fcc does not seem to be interested. in addressing this the press is completely ignoring the issue. what can be said about the possibility of looking at this. we are starting to organize now. the people being targeted, including myself, are starting to organize and talk to each other and share our experiences and we want to go to the government and say help us. guest: it has not gotten a lot of attention. the security of the phone system on the wireless on system is an issue that is getting some attention.
it's because washington is a city with lots of foreign officials and embassies on a lot of intelligence gathering going on in this city. there are devices right now that are sold cheaply on the open market. they are stingray devices. the technology to literally sit outside a building and start down during all of the phone signals in that building is very cheap right now. i could probably go out and put it in our car and sit outside a building into some very basic surveillance if we wanted to. a number of people at the aclu and other x and -- organizations have been raising the question as to why the government is not doing more to secure those systems and make them less vulnerable to spying to say nothing of monitoring buyer on government but by anybody who wants to go out and monitor someone or foreign intelligence organizations that are monitoring embassies.
the answer is because the government needs to keep vulnerabilities so it can monitor it as well. it points to one of the really unusual and interesting aspects of cyberspace. the government has this incentive on the one hand to try to make medications networks safer and defend the networks but on the other, to keep fundamental weaknesses and vulnerabilities in them so we can spy on other people and we can do things to other people and possibly in this country as well. those are very conflicting missions. e sorting out which side yourr on, that is really a policy in a political challenge and that will be something that future presidents will have to start to reconcile. host: austin, texas, sue, democratic caller. caller: hi there, before i say anything else, when you tell a caller to tender -- turned down their tv come you should also tell them not to watch it. host: ok. caller: there are visual cues
that happen and i often hear people pause and stutter because they expect to see your reactions that they will not happen. host: good advice. go ahead with your question or comment. caller: i am 63 and i code for games. in doing this, you have to be able to figure out all the ways the people using your code can abuse it. that is just a game. it can take a long time. when the obama website came out, it's not the first website that came out horribly. we come as americans, most of us do not code. most of us watch tv. on tv, you can fix the hacking problem in an hour. on tv, you can see what's wrong with code in 30 seconds just reading it. that's just not how it works. coding is a lot -- there are so much more involved in it and you
have to be able to have guile to understand how people are going to misuse the code you are writing. you can write code that has perfect intentions that could still have workarounds for people to abuse. guest: you are absolutely right. coding is externally, located. -- extremely complicated. it is in many ways an art as well as a science. it's beautiful, really. what she's pointing out is that, particularly in complex systems, there will always be some way or some flaw of vulnerability. that's what hackers are doing is finding those weaknesses. it's incumbent on the people designing these two think one
step ahead. what i find fascinating about the engineering of this is that to be a really brilliant hacker, it requires you not just a figure out how you might undo a system but how you might build it so nobody else can manipulate it. this is where you get into the weeds of cyber operations, people trying to find the weaknesses and flaws in each other's code and exploit that. these are the kinds of minds that are working both sides of those issues. it's really quite fascinating. it's a field that will grow. i know the administration and others are trying to encourage young people to get into this. they want more women to get involved in coding. this is a feel that has been largely dominated by men in computer science and engineering. teaching kids how to code can i sometimes wonder if it will be like when kids build soapbox derby cars and kids grow up writing codes and programs and apps on they probably will. that will be the reservoir of knowledge from which all of this
activity will spring in the future. host: from twitter -- guest: there is a lot of similarities. one similarity is that if you take cyber attacks as a category of military operations, you might put them in the category of something like remote warfare, things we can do without having to send troops to a battlefield. drones are the same thing. the drones that we have now are becoming more sophisticated and advanced. they talk to each other over computer networks and their run over computer and satellite networks. there is a question of whether those networks might be vulnerable to our adversaries. we put all of this in the category of future kind of war being the ones fought remotely for it is not about sending troops into harm's way. it's all most entirely dependent on technology and can indication systems to run. host: clifton park, new york, independent --
sorry, i have to push the button. now you are on the air. caller: hello, i'm curious to know -- this involves changing legal tender laws to digital currency. how would that affect -- i think he is concerned with national security and the military and how that relates to the military. if he could comment on that. i would like to take his comments off the air, if i may. guest: it's not something i look at much in the book, digital currency. it's a fascinating subject. one of the questions that comes up is how do you secure a digital currency system question mark how do you make sure that the essential bank and if you think of it that way, is not hacked. it is a fascinating field of study and i think security is
the underpinning of that area. host: the book is "at war." we've got about 10 it's left and we will go to arnold in tennessee, democratic caller. caller: good morning, how are you all doing? you were talking earlier about code being as much an art as it is a science. i would like to ask you a question -- i have written a book and i put the book online and it's free, there is no charge for it. it's atwww.godislove.org. on pages 31 and 32 of that book, you will see something that is either the signature of god, the
signature of intelligent design or it's the signature of just coincidence. it is an alignment of 7's from the book of revelation. for those who want to say it's nothing but coincidence, host: what does this have to do with the topic? caller: ok, got as a programmer. god has written a carbon-based, three-dimensional, virtual reality game called life. just as people turn to god all the time in times of trouble, you know, controlling computer systems and stuff like that will be no problem. for a superior being host: travis in atlanta georgia, caller: hi, the lady had mentioned coding being the responsibility of the coder and before that it was mentioned the
israeli attack on the centrifuges. some people talked about the possibility of the fukushima being a recoding. how do you feel about responsibility? guest: this raises the question, do you blame the victim in an attack? the question has often come up of whether or not companies and manufacture pieces of software that have flaws and vulnerabilities in them should be held to some degree of liability. that has been something that has been a big debate. we should underscore that persistent hackers who want to break into networks and disrupt communications are always going to have an advantage which is time. they will constantly devote time to get out a system. if someone was to break into your house, you can protect your self as much as possible but
they may find a way into it. the responsibility and onus has to be on people creating software to make your they aren't as secure as possible but also understand that a persistent adversary will have time and possibly resources to come after you. most people are not equipped to deal with that. we should not be too quick even in a case like sony, there is a lot of blaming the victim that goes on in these cases. there may be an element of that but let's remember that we don't go around blaming people for their houses getting robbed or for acts of violence perpetrated against them. there is a little bit of blame the victim mentality in cyberspace that should be modulated. host: another situation in the book is the relationship tween the government and tech giants like google and microsoft in this arena. what is going on there? guest: they are joining up largely because the government cannot protect all of these massive networks in the country on its own.
it needs companies to tell the government what kind of threats they are seeing and what are the signatures and patterns and trends they are seeing in their network. google processes so much of the world's into met traffic -- internet traffic and has a vantage point internetworks. a number of years ago, after google was actually hacked by spies in china and had some of its intellectual property compromise, they formed a secret agreement with the national security agency whereby google provides information to the nsa about the threats it sees and editing from its networks. is supposed to in turn informed google about the kinds of things it sees perhaps from classified sources. this information sharing model which is unprecedented in american history -- companies becoming the beneficiaries of government intelligence derived from espionage and companies working with spy agencies to protect private systems is fascinating. that is at the heart of how the
government is doing cyber security on a broad scale. it's partnering with industries and companies and saying let's work together and share information to attack this problem. there are those in the government who would rather have the agencies like nsa come into those networks and take that job over entirely. the companies have resisted that and do not want intelligence agencies in their network that they're willing to form these partnerships as long it does not involve wholesale handing over the keys to your network. host: temple, texas, sam, democratic caller. good morning to you. you are on the air. caller: yes, host: you have to turn your tv off. listen through the phone. you are on. let me move on to cutler in new hampshire, democratic caller.
caller: yes. you are looking very nice this morning. i wish the staff merry christmas. the topic as i see is the rise of the military. i am ex navy from vietnam. i am in recovery and an alcoholic. i cannot justify any war we have been in except for world war ii and we did not enter that until we were affected by pearl harbor. i guess my feeling here is that we go into some of these wars looking for the best interest of the united states, whether it is oil or whatever. we have also supported corrupt dictators.
i think it's time for the people of this country to wake up to the fact that there is a lot of collateral damage for heard a man speak this morning who was sent 13 times to afghanistan. coming back, he's got ptsd, he went to drugs and alcohol and today, through the grace of aa and god, he had dinner with his children who had turned away from him. host: we are running out of time. guest: as far as collateral damage, there is that risk in cyber wars. all of us who have to use the internet as well, the big question for policymakers in washington is if we are going to devote resources to defending our computer networks and the vital infrastructure in the united states, at the same time,
we will have a mission of trying to attack networks, how do you reconcile those? i think we need to have a real discussion about which side of that ledger will come down on. if defense is the business of the government to make the internet safer, there are a lot of things we are doing better making the internet less safe in trying to make it safer. there's a conflict between our missions now that we have not sorted out. host: what is the justification? guest: from the united states perspective, if we don't get their other countries will first. they will take over and dominate this space in the u.s. does not want to allow that to happen. we should also at the size that networks in this country are under assault. companies are having their intellectual properties stolen. the sony case has risen to the level of public consciousness and thousands of other companies are being compromised for it is
a real threat and needs to be addressed from host: that's what we'll talk about coming up next about the sony movie. do you plan to see a question -- do you plan to see it? guest: absolutely, hope they show it in washington. i want to see of it is any good. i think they set their expectations pretty high. i wanted to see before but i think it is a happening. i personally think that sony should air the film. i don't think we should bow to threats from whomever it was be -- that was behind this. it is free expression and i'm in the category of people who believe that. i will see the movie just as an active protest or a sign of solidarity. host: shane harris, rights for "the daily beast," covering cyber security and out with a new book "@war," thanks for your time. >> on the next washington journal, rebecca berg of the washington examiner on the 2016
presidential race and potential campaigns by jeb bush and elizabeth warren. baylesstalk with martha public diplomacy and pop culture in shaping america's image abroad. we are live with your phone calls, facebook comments and tweets every morning on c-span at 7 a.m. eastern. >> here's a look at some of the programs you'll find christmas day on the c-span networks. holiday festivities start at 10 a.m. with the lighting of the national christmas tree followed by the white house christmas decorations with first lady michelle obama and a lighting of the capitol christmas tree. just after 12:30 p.m., celebrity activists and their causes. samuel alito and former florida governor jeb bush on the bill of rights and the founding fathers. on c-span 2, venture into the art of good writing with stephen pinker.
the feminist side of a superhero searching for the secret history of wonder woman. author pamela paul and others talk about their reading habits. and on american history tv on c-span 3, the fall of the berlin wall with footage from george bush and bob dole. at noon, fashion experts on first lady's fashion choices and how they represent the style and times in which they lived. tom brokaw in his more than 50 years of reporting on world events this christmas day on the c-span networks. for a complete schedule, go to www.c-span.org. >> up next, a look at the death penalty in the u.s. criminal justice system. we will hear from sister helen prejean and lawyer bryan stevenson. his book is "just mercy: a story of justice and redemption."
this event was held at the new york public library in october. [applause] >> good evening. my name is paul and i'm the director of public rogue ramsey >> -- programs here at the new york a look library known as live from the new york public library. my goal is to make the lions roar and if i'm successful to make this institution levitate. [speaking french] " to open a school is to close a prison." for helping to secure sister helen prejean tonight, i wish to thank anthony romero, executive director of the american civil liberties union. thank you, anthony, very much. i could not be more honored and pleased to be welcoming to the
stage at the criminal justice system, bryan stevenson and "just mercy: a story of justice and redemption -- and sister helen prejean. [applause] for bringing to my attention, the extraordinary new book, julie grell, the publisher to thank. last time we worked together, she brought to my attention "decoded" by jay-z. it was an extraordinary night as i feel this one will be. julie, thank you. thank you also london king. might i also thank my wife, barbara, for rightfully insisting that bryan stevenson be live from the new york public library tonight. [applause] thank you, barbara.
i recorded a reading aloud and with passion past passages to meet from "just mercy. hermit me to quote if you so that you understand and hear before the conversation how his work is both excellent and essential. incidentally, he will be signing his book after the event as will sister helen prejean. please do get a copy of "just mercy." and "dead man walking" which benefit the ministry against the death penalty. in just mercy, stevenson writes, "my work with the poor and incarcerated has persuaded me that the opposite of poverty is not wealth. the opposite of poverty is justice. in another passage, bryan writes about his grandmother in the
1880's in virginia. when i visited her, she would hug me so tightly i could barely breathe. after a little while, she would ask me, bryan, do you still feel me hugging you? if i said yes, she would let me go. you cannot understand most of the important things from a distance, bryan. you have to get close, she told me all the time. when spending a few weeks, he met the director of the s pdc. bryan, capital punishment means them without the capital get the
punishment. finally, i would like to read to paragraph of the introduction to this extraordinary book. finally, i have come to believe the true measure of our commitment to justice, the character of our society, our commitment to the rule of law, fairness, and equality cannot be measured by how we treat the rich, the powerful, the privileged, and the respected among us. the true measure of our character is how we treat the poor, the disfavored, the accused, the incarcerated, and the condemned. we are all implicated when we allow other people to be mistreated. an absence of compassion can corrupt the decency of a community, state, nation. fear and anger can make us a
vindictive, abusive, just, unfair. the closer we get to extreme levels of punishment, the more i appreciate that we all need mercy, we all need justice and perhaps we all need some measure of unmerited grace. for the last seven years or so, i have asked my guests to give a biography of themselves in seven words, a haiku of sorts. the seven words of each of our guests, i want you to listen to them very carefully. before i give you those seven words, i could think of no better pairing than having bryan stevenson in conversation with sister helen prejean. i hope they make us think, perhaps feel uncomfortable or
less comfortable, and push us to act. sister helen prejean seven words -- human, jesus follower, activist, sister, storyteller, writer, traveler. bryan stevenson -- broken by poverty, injustice, condemnation, but hopeful. it is an honor to welcome to the new york public library sister helen prejean and bryan stevenson. [applause] [applause]
>> thank you. >> thank you. >> well, i guess it's up to us, bryan? we are both southerners and storytellers, so that ought to be good. y'all can listen if you want to, and then maybe you can get in on it, too? i just want to say at the outset, "dead man walking" has been out there over 20 years and we are still working it. the last word is just a getting to the people, telling the story, waking the people up. bryan's book is just coming out
and i'm in the role of john the baptist, jesus, listen to him. i will be telling my stories -- don't worry. you will not be able to escape that. but to bryan's story and what he is standing for is so good. how did you happen to do this book? was it something you automatically wanted to do? >> i'll be honest. i was resisting writing a book for a long time. as you know, our lives are full spending time with a lot of people who are in great need, people who are condemned, incarcerated, and we cannot meet all the needs of the people who need help and can make you feel like you don't have time for anything other than trying to meet those needs. i've been privileged over the last 15-20 years at the equal injustice initiative to give me space to do things and it's on
their shoulders i get to do the things that i can do. the things that we see, i believe if more people saw them they would feel differently about some of these issues. following your witness and the lead, the way you were able to expose to the death penalty that may be writing a book would give space for people to come and join us on this journey and go with us in these difficult bases but hopefully see the hope and possibility for justice. >> i always felt a book was just a passive thing. you go into a bookstore. in the south, we talk to each other. when you are talking, you know you have the people but you go in the bookstore, it just sits there. until you get the word out about it because you have to choose the book, choose to read it.
i resisted, but now that i've seen the power of a book, we are in this library. i just wanted to the periodical room to read -- to me, people of the world and to inhabit experiences we will never have. what's so good about what you are doing -- and i want to go there with you, because i know defense lawyers for poor people in louisiana are not invited to the big cocktail parties. they are not respected for what they do. representing that scum? it's a terrible culture in which automatically poor people who do crimes are automatically considered guilty. if you represent them, have you ever been thrown into jail for contempt of court?
he asked the judge not to call his african-american client by only his first name. your honor, i object. he spent the night in jail. >> i've never been held in contempt but it's interesting. i think for poor people and people of color, going to court is always threatening, menacing, intimidating experience. for many defense lawyers, it's the same way. you are going to meet tremendous hostility and anger. i've been practicing law for a long time, and i never felt like it's where i belong because you see so much pain and anguish there. in a lot of ways, i've benefited from the presumptions people have because they do not expect me to be the lawyer. i was in a courtroom in the
midwest not too long ago when we started representing children prosecuted as adults. want to talk about the presumption of guilt that poor people and people of color are born with, that's one of the big challenges, black and brown children born with a presumption of guilt in danger that follows them. we are suffering in new york where we have stop and frisk, ferguson, the states that have stand your ground laws because it becomes an opportunity to victimize people covering this presumption. i was getting ready for a hearing, the first time i've been in this courtroom. i had a suit on. it might have been this one. i was just sitting there waiting for the hearing the start and the judge walked out and the prosecutor walked up behind the judge. the judge saw me sitting at the defense table he said, you get out of here. i don't want any defendants in my courtroom. you wait until your lawyer gets here. i stood up and said my name is bryan stevenson. i'm actually the lawyer representing a client today. he started laughing.
the prosecutor started laughing and i made myself laugh because i did not want to disadvantage my client. my client came in, a young white kid -- [laughter] >> the great reversal. >> we did the hearing but afterward i was thinking how exhausting it is. these are judges, the people who are supposed to be fair and not act on these presumptions of bias. it's exhausting to be constantly dealing with it. for a lot of defense attorneys, court rooms are not friendly places, convenient, comfortable places. a lot of that rage gets directed at you. for our clients, it's even more hostile. when you stand with poor people, you feel that inequality. big-time. >> a culture where you are -- have you found that?
i've been to seattle a lot, oregon, people in the northwest, that's a different culture from new orleans, louisiana, up -- opelousas. they run on how many death penalties they've given. the louisiana prick award. it shows the pelican flying with a hypodermic needle in its talons and it means i got three death penalties and my opponent is weak on crime. i'm strong against crime. it plays out in the culture, the language, the judges elections
and the way politicians talk and the way attorneys are treated. to be a defense attorney, i love talking to defense attorneys. >> you are right. it is corrupted. you going to these courtrooms and you see where they have many electric chairs sitting on the desk. we had an attorney general running for governor and his whole campaign was organized around his support for the death penalty and he was basically telling everyone if you vote for me, i will "fry 'em until their eyes pop out." you can get bumper stickers that said this, this crude, corrosive, abusive worldview became part of that altar. -- culture. it is so demoralizing to see people celebrating the abuse of those who are disfavored but it's a big challenge for us and
it's one reason why i think the politics of fear and anger have made our work so difficult. getting past that cultural performance of being tough on crime is one of the great challenges we face. >> let's take it out of the south. look at the central park five. if you see that documentary and what happened to those five kids about the central park jogger? you see how young people, how a confession is coerced from young people. look. you talk to us and tell us what really happened. they just want to go home. if i tell you, i can go home? and then they play them one after the other and cobble this together. some of these kids are sent to prison and it's very disheartening. i'm not sure the prosecutor's office in new york ever took
responsibility for what happened to those kids. i find this -- do you find this? of the 146 wrongfully accused people, we have to tell that story of how it happened, but of those 146 wrongfully accused people who managed to get off of death row through the innocence project, college volunteers, 90% were prosecutorial misconduct. i had no idea how this worked. i thought prosecutors -- i thought the whole system worked. i did not know people would get invested in winning no matter what and then hide the original police report, dna evidence, or whatever. >> this is a national problem. we created an institution that really thrives on success.
we want our prosecutors to be tough and successful. we want our judges to be tough. we want them to be a reflection of the fear and anger we experience when we watch the nightly news. they take on these roles and that means they sometime have to cut corners. the mcmillan case is a clear example of that. walt mcmillan was one of the first people i represented when i started this project in alabama in 1989. his case was one i started working on before. what struck me about it is when i went to death row and met him, the first thing he told me was he had been on death broke for 15 months pretrial. had never met anybody, never represented anybody. he was sent to death row before. so they were saying in the media, death row defendant will
be at pretrial hearings and it created this environment. the second thing i could not believe was when i went to see his family they said at the time the crime took place, they were with mr. mcmillan raising money for his sister's church. the crime was 11 miles away and they were there the entire time. they knew he was innocent and it was interesting to see the despair that created. >> can you imagine? >> it would have been so much better if he was out hunting in the woods by himself is at least then we could entertain the possibility we could be guilty. we were there with him so we feel we've been sent to death, too. the despair was tangible and you could feel it. i got back to my office and this amazing incident where the judge who sentenced him to death, robert e lee key.
he said, you don't want nothing to have to do with this guy. he was trying to dissuade me from representing mr. mcmillan. with all of those things going on, it became a case that was too irresistible to walk away from. this case took place in alabama which is where harper lee grew up and wrote "to kill a mockingbird." everyone's read it. it's a beautiful story. the people in monroeville love the story. there's boo radley street, scout street, atticus bench, all through the community.
watching such an incredibly vicious prosecution take place, one of the challenges is that we had narratives in american literature that we celebrate for the wrong reasons. we give out these awards, the atticus finch award, a very famous model that the legal profession has embraced but the truth of it is that tom robinson died in prison. he did not get justice. i certainly want more for the clients we represent than what atticus was able to get. changing that has been the real challenge. we spent six years trying to get mr. mcmillan off of death row. we got bomb threats at our office and we had people following us creating all kinds of hazards in this space where people celebrate the story of "to kill a mockingbird." >> what a story.
what happened to walter mcmillan, the lies that were told, what you showed and just the fight all the way through -- >> these wrongful convictions, as you know, we now have 147 people proven innocent. we have now proved one person innocent which is a shocking rate of error. prosecutorial misconduct are some of the key components and it was certainly what we had here, a young white woman murdered in downtown monroeville. mr. mcmillan was not someone you would suspect of committing a crime. he was actually a 45-year-old african-american hard worker. his mistake was he was having an interracial affair with the young white woman related to one of the police officers.
in alabama until 2000 two the state constitution still prohibited interracial marriage. it was not enforceable after loving versus virginia but we could not get people to take it out of the constitution so these attitudes were very real. after seven months they were getting pressured and you see this pressure into these spaces where they do really unjust things. gun sales increasing, talking about impeaching the sheriff. they begin to put this case together and got a man to testify against him, coerced the man to testify. they tape recorded the sessions where they were coercing him to testify falsely and even more bizarre they did not destroy the tape. i had a rental car and a tape player. it had auto reverse. a lot of people here won't know
what we are talking about because they've never seen a tape player. we had gone to the court house to pick up the tapes with these interviews. he did not say anything that was helpful to us for this witness and i was getting discouraged. it was quiet and then i heard it click. auto reverse turns it over to the other side of the tape and that's where we have the earlier interviews where it said, you want me to frame an innocent man for murder and i don't feel right about that. [laughter] the police officer said if you don't give us what you want, we will put you on death row, too, and it went on for an hour. we got the witnesses to recant and it was incredibly exciting to finally see this moving forward. there were police officers who had gone to mr. mcmillan's house, bought a fish sandwich, and made notes in their logs indicating they bought a fish
sandwich and nothing was turned over. he was convicted in a trial that lasted a day and a half adding a jury verdict of life overridden by the elected judge. >> jury overwrite is such a terrible thing. we are the state that has the most use of it now. 100-something people have gotten a death sentence as a result of an override. what's ironic and chilling is judge robert e lee key probably saved mr. mcmillan's life. if he had allowed the jury verdict to stand, we would have never been able to get to his case. we were only working on death penalty cases. the heartbreaking thing is that for every mcmillan there are 10 serving life without parole. for every 10 there is 100 serving a lesser sentence. because he had a death sentence we picked up the case.
>> there's the great irony that chances are you'll get more help if you have a death case. all of the people languishing under these long sentences, half of the 6000 people in prison have practical life without parole sentences. half of them. most of them never get a visit, a postcard, or anything. the languishing, it is massive exile. when you think of it that it is 2.3 million people, we are the biggest incarcerater in the world, one in every 100 adults. do i have this right? since we've made drugs a felony, i've heard that one in every three young black men aged 19-29 are in the prison system? prison, parole -- >> that's right. >> that's more than apartheid in south africa.
>> the really scary statistic that i'm especially terrified of now is that one of three black male babies are expected to go to jail or prison. that wasn't true in the 20th century, 19th century. it became true. we've got tremendous, tremendous work to do to turn this thing around. getting people to just be honest and responsible in the prosecutor's offices and law enforcement is part of how we do that. we have some bigger challenges as well. >> just to have a little perspective, a white woman of privilege growing up in baton rouge, louisiana, during the days of jim crow. it gives me compassion and working with people because it took so long for me to wake up.
when you are in a culture, it gives you eyes and ears. honey, that's the way we do things. it's better for the races to be separate. they like to go and be with their people and we like being with our people. i go to sacred heart church in baton rouge -- they like to go and be with their own people in me like being with our people. this is symbolic of the oneness in the body of christ am a black kids had to make their first communion separate or my kids and i never questioned it. we had an african-american couple that worked at the house. ellen worked in the house with mama. jesse worked in the yard. daddy and mama were kind. daddy helped them get property, get a house, helped jesse get a job at the refinery, and then they moved on, but never
questioned the system. i did not question the system. it's like my whole approach to the gospel. one of my seven words was jesus-follower. there's a way to follow jesus and there is a way to follow jesus. there are a lot of ways. [laughter] pope francis follows jesus, but it's different than what others may follow, or the bishops or whatever. the institutional church that happens. for me, bryan, it really was an awakening around the gospel that i did not even really realized i had grown up in privilege. when i had joined the nuns, we still had african-american people helping the sisters. helping the cooks and the cook family yard. i never questioned it.
but it was when we began to discuss the civil rights movement and what was happening in liberation theology in latin america about being on the side of poor people, i had always resisted that justice stuff because i thought we should just be spiritual. if people have god, they have everything. my spiritual life was parallel because after all, all you want to do is one day be in heaven with god, right? i did not even really know poor people. when i woke up to what the gospel is really about thomas going and being with people, when i moved into the st. thomas house in the project, it was like going to a different country. i found out when i did research there were more complaints to the justice department about police brutality in new orleans,
louisiana, than any other city. if you are living in the suburbs, that could be calcutta. you are so removed from the experience. public school kids coming into the adult learning center. juniors that could not read a third grade reader. nobody had health care. people were dying. young men did not know they had high blood pressure and destroying their kidneys. then they are on dialysis the rest of their life. they are so angry and on dialysis. what happens when you don't have health care? when i first went there, we had a great sister who had started hope house. helen, you don't have to have this plan in your back pocket about how you will eliminate poverty. just be a neighbor and let them teach you. african-american people then
became my teachers. one thing i realized, it's not that i was so virtuous. i had just been so cushioned and protected and given a good education. you begin to know who you are and what gifts you have and then you can have agency in the world. if you don't even know what gifts you have, you think you are stupid. i can't learn that. i'm not smart. i'm not this, i'm not that. >> it so interesting. i do think we have done this horrible thing in america by not questioning the wrongs we have done and the consequences of those wrongs. >> big-time. >> this country has never been self-critical or self reflective about its mistakes. we do not like to admit mistakes particularly at the national level.
because of that we have created a world where we can be living in clsoe proximity to tremendous poverty, racism, bigotry, and still be comfortable. we've been taught we are not responsible for the problems we see around us. one of the great challenges for me right now -- and this is a burden -- is how we correct it how we change this narrative. our new project is about race and poverty. we are now really focused on reeducating this country on our history of racial inequality. it has to start with that history. in so many ways, we are still suffering from the legacy of slavery. i talk about my grandmother a lot because she was the daughter of people who were enslaved. her parents were born in virginia in the 1840's and slavery shaped the way she was
raised, the way she raised my mother, the way she talked to me. it's not a distant thing from me. when i think about slavery, i think about the fact that we had an institution that was very different than other societies. america became a country that became a slave society. we did more than just enslave people. we created a mythology about the differences between white people and people of color. we created a religion that tried to reconcile slavery by saying they are not fully human. their characters aren't evolved and we will help them by enslaving them and we made ourselves feel good about the fact we owned all of the slaves. that myth, that ideology that sustained slavery was not addressed by the 13th amendment. it was not addressed by the emancipation proclamation. that's why i'm persuaded slavery did not end.
it evolved. it turned into something else. we had racial hierarchy that still had that mythology. then make it two decades of terrorism between reconstruction and world war ii that shaped the life of my grandmother with terror and violence, lynching and violence sending her friends to the north, the fear and the threat that was constant and persistent. we never talked about the trauma created by lynching people. that was followed by the jim crow era and the civil rights movement. we were so focused dealing with these little issues, where you can eat, where you can sleep, where you can drink. we never took time to talk about the big issues, this historical arc of inequality and injustice. it concerns me. because we've never develop the habits of being truthful about what we did wrong during slavery
, during the era of terrorism, did wrong during decades of segregation -- you cannot subject people to the humiliation of excluding them from education day in and out. you cannot injure them in the ways that segregation injures people and just move on. those injuries will continue. one of my great fears now is talking about the 50th anniversary of a lot of things. i'm worried about the way we are even celebrating. this the 50th anniversary the civil rights act. it was the 50th anniversary of the march on washington. it's almost like it is this three-day experience. rosa parks gave up her seat, a march on washington, and then congress signed all of these laws. if we think about it like that,
we are frustrated that people are still talking about racial bias. we never committed ourselves to a process of truth and reconciliation. we will not have justice until we tell the truth about what we did to our society, to this country, by tolerating lynching, tolerating segregation. the reason we don't care about one in three black boys is going to prison because we have not cared about the distinction. we have work that has to be done and we are trying to put up markers to reflect these spaces in america where the slave trade flourished. if you come to montgomery, we love talking about 19th-century history, confederate monuments. we have 59 monuments and memorials, jefferson davis high, robert e lee high school.
10 months ago, you would find those markers and not a single word about slavery. we went to mark the spaces where the slave trade flourished and we want to talk about lynching. we want to mark the places where there were these mass public spectacle lynchings where the entire town came out and participated. they were not being lynched because they were accused of a crime. a lot of them were lynched for social transgressions because they went to the front door of somebody's house rather than the back door. they laughed too loudly at a joke. it is all about terrorizing these communities. we don't talk about it and we will continue to run into these problems. >> you point to something really big. i'm reading a book now, "lies my teacher taught me." it's the way we've written history.
the people's history of the united states, usually the one who writes the history are the victors and not the people who were subjugated. i was just up in seattle on the day that the city council changed columbus day to indigenous peoples day. did you know how long that has taken? and most people don't know what christopher columbus did to people. he cut off children's hands when they did i bring him gold. lcwr, nuns in america? nuns on the bus? they called on pope francis to rescind three papal bulls. it doesn't mean what you think. it's just official thing. we won't go there.
[laughter] what it said, basically, indigenous people were considered pagan. if they did not become christians, it was ok to enslave them. then it gave the green light with religion blessing slavery that some people were meant to be. you have that blessing of religion on people. i happen to know some northern cheyenne people who live in montana and in the sweat lodge. they can remember their grandparents remembering how the calvary would come right along with the missionaries to tear down the sweat lodges because they were pagan. we still have struggled against that. we don't know it. people who never suffered about it, when i went to saint thomas and began to be educated, there
is a great workshop called undoing racism. i remember ron chaise longue, one of the great teachers and civil rights leaders in new orleans talking about institutional racism. you blackball somebody but white is always pure. white is good, even in the language, we have racism. then he would say to us, you may walk in the room and someone does not like what you stand for and they may argue because of your ideas, but you will never walk into a room where people will treat you funny simply because of the color of your skin. i never thought about those things. i never had even heard of the term white privilege before. >> when we commit ourselves to telling the truth about the history of racial inequality in this country, you get to hear things that you would not otherwise hear. you create a safe space for people to actually give voice to
the things that they really want to talk about, like the humiliation and trauma. we have communities where people are suffering from communal post traumatic stress disorder very much related to the trauma of segregation and racial subordination. i had a sweet mom. she was a church musician. my mom was precious to me. i never saw her be anything other than kind and just. she would give anything to anybody. i remember when it was time to get polio shots, we did not have a doctor in our county but they told everyone to go to this place. the black kids had to line up in the back of this building in november. we were waiting for the nurses to finish giving the polio shots to the white kids and took them longer. by the time they got to us, the nurses were tired. they did not have any of the sugar cubes. they were grabbing these kids in just being rough with them.
my sister was in front of me. the nurse grabbed my sister. she had that needle and she just jabbed my sister in the arm and she started screaming. i saw her coming at me and i looked at my mom and i started bleeding and screaming. she was raising that needle and i was terrified. i heard all of this glass breaking and i turned around and my sweet mother, my church organ playing mother had gone over to pick up these trays and was just throwing them against the wall. she was so angry. she was saying stop it, stop it. the doctor said, call the police. i watched these black masters negotiated for my mom safety. don't worry. please give shots to the rest of our children. had to beg them to continue giving shots. it was traumatizing, hurtful,
humiliating. there are thousands of these experiences and moments that have been inherited and all of this suffering follows you around. then you see these big confederate flags and it's like being a holocaust survivor and having to go back and watch swastikas. don't worry about it. just get over it. that indifference intensifies the grief and suffering. then you are told not to be truthful about it. you will not succeed if you talk truthfully about the burden of discrimination. you will not be successful if you talk honestly about these issues. we have created a country where we are continuing to struggle and suffer. the great truth, you cannot say we will have a truth and reconciliation conference, the truth has to make people uncomfortable enough that they want to reconcile themselves to a new relationship.
the truth was in front of you. you have to have that truthful moment, but you're right. the church has a lot to explain. they do. the church has been complicit in this dynamic. they have been complicit in the lies. we have a generation of white people are born and thought they were better than other people because they're a white and we have not helped them recover from that abuse. >> angola, it is the road that dead ends at the louisiana state penitentiary, 18,000 acres. it used to be a slave plantation. it is still called angola because they used to have slaves from angola. 75% of the prisoners averaged
sixth grade education and you see them walking out to the field with hoes over their shoulder leading them out and you see that nothing has really changed very much. what happened is it just changed right over into imprisonment. martin luther king, that book, where do we go from here? from chaos to community. what did it mean to say people were emancipated to set them free in an agricultural society and not give them land? we would never think of doing a homestead act and saying get out there and talk to the chamber of commerce or something. you had to have land, a mule, be able to work the land. there is something that wants to be able to work.
you you get out of slavery and then you move right into what did the plantation owners do? have you seen any of those black codebooks? have you seen them? >> i've seen them. it is shocking, really. it basically gives you the punishment and crime based on the race of the offender and the race of the victim. rape of a white woman by a black man is a mandatory death sentence. rape of a black woman by a white man is a $100 fine. even when the codes were formerly eliminated, the code persisted. we had the racialized criminal justice system but that's one of the tragedies as well, i think, because we do not understand this legacy. it is not just a southern phenomenon. it was so terrifying that thousands, millions leaving the south, and to the cities of the north.
los angeles, oakland, detroit, chicago, boston, new york, philadelphia were populated by african-americans who fled the south not because they were looking for economic opportunity but because they were fleeing terror. >> and being lynched. if anyone knows about terrorism, african-americans. >> older people say, i get so angry when i hear someone talking about how we are dealing with terrorism for the first time after 9/11. we hate it when people say not because we grew up in terror. the other challenge, i think as we have these communities in the north where these populations came here as refugees and exiles from terror and they brought with them all about trauma and stress and they were never made to feel like they belong to year. we moved them around in our cities.
when something becomes economically viable, we moved them away because we've never seen them as belonging. that harms us all over this country so we have much to do to change this narrative. i think what we're talking about is how do you change the narrative? how do you get people to think and talk differently about these issues? part of the reason we are putting up these monuments is we want people to think and talk differently about the legacy of slavery, the civil rights era and not simply celebrate these grand marches but reflect on what we did by segregating and humiliating. >> i remember being shocked. i learned a lot through "dead man walking" and being people who were executed in how the whole criminal justice system worked. it shocked me profoundly. one of the things, when you write a book, you do research. so i learned about police brutality, more complaints than
the justice department but when slavery was abolished and the 13th amendment, it was except for those who were in prison or indentured. it has not been abolished completely in this country. i have been amazed. just the racism in the supreme court. there was an extensive study done in georgia about how when a death sentence is given, overwhelmingly it corresponds to the victim is white. when the victim is black, it's barely a blip on the radar screen. i saw that when i was living in saint thomas. if one of the people in saint thomas was killed who were lucky if you can find five lines on page 30 and almost always it was formulaic drug deal went bad.
when a white person was killed it was on the front pages on the paper. the picture of the person. i want you to talk about this because you know about the mccleskey decision of the supreme court. did i get this right? it's clear that race plays a role in the application of the death penalty but it would be too costly in the criminal justice system to remedy it? >> it really is astonishing. you're absolutely right and this why i think this narrative is desperately needed to change. it's also connected to the 13th amendment. it does exempt people with criminal convictions from the prohibition against slavery. i have been talking about this with my class and my students. we are so outraged. why would we tolerate enslaving anybody? we would probably have great difficulty removing that
exception to the 13th amendment. we think the legacy of racial inequality means we should not the tolerating slavery in any context, we get pushed back. it's because we have allowed this idea to emerge, which has fed mass incarceration, that when people are accused of crimes, we get to do whatever we want to do. those people in angola until the 21st century were not only going out but they were required to pick cotton without trying to get parole for people who were juveniles sentenced. some of our clients are having a hard time getting parole because they had disciplinaries because they refuse to go out to the fields and pick cotton. >> and you get two cents an hour. the most you can there -- the most you can get there after 20 years is $.21 per hour. >> interesting conversation.
the supreme court says in 1972 we will strike down the death penalty because it's arbitrary and discriminatory. 87% were black men convicted of raping white women. the court said no more death penalty. they did not say cruel and unusual punishment. we will not presume that the death penalty will continue to operate in a racially biased manner. look, it's been four years. nothing radical has happened. you'll still have a racially biased system. you're going to have to show us that the modern death penalty operates in this way and that's what gave rise to mccleskey
versus camp where we came back with the data that showed your 11 times more likely to get the death penalty if the victim is white, 22 times more likely if the victim is black, no matter what combination of variables. >> and there were a lot of variables. >> even george's model made you 4.3 times as likely and the supreme court said two things. if we deal with racial bias in the administration of the death penalty, it will be just a matter of time until they talk about racist barriers for other times of criminal sentences, race disparity for property crimes and other types of crimes. justice brenin, i will never forget reading it. he ridicules the court's analysis. the court is reached this decision because it is the fear of too much justice. in many ways, he was right. it was the second thing they said that i remember as a young lawyer reading and almost
wanting to stop practicing law. the second thing they put in that decision, a certain quantum of bias and discrimination is in our judgment inevitable. they use that word to characterize that result. i've been to that court and argued a bunch of cases and i have my on little ritual. i stand out and read where it says equal justice under law and i have to believe it but there is something profoundly inconsistent with conceding the inevitability of race bias in the death penalty and being committed to equal justice under law. >> it so bad. >> i am a product of brown versus board of education. i grew up where black children could not go to public schools and i remember when the lawyers came in to our community and opened up the public schools. the courts could have said in 1955 that racial segregation in education is inevitable.
they don't want their kids going to go with black kids. if we order equal education, the conflict will be big, but a different court with a different narrative, with a different vision said it was not inevitable. they said it was unconstitutional. if they had not said that, i would not be sitting here. yet this court in our era is talking about the inevitability. i think mccleskey is the dred scott of our time. >> this will make you very sad and depressed and angry before it will get better. i am astounded. in my second book "the death of innocents" i go head-to-head with justice scalia. he goes duck hunting with my brother, louis. he's a catholic on the supreme
court. [laughter] lord, that is what i mean about the jesus thing. [laughter] they just wrote a book on anthony scalia. in my book, i talk about how he calls himself part of the machinery of death. he says it without blinking. he says he sleeps well at night. he spelled it out. his interpretation of romans 13 that god has entrusted the civil authority or government with the right to exercise god's wrath on evildoers. the more christian a country is, the more we believe in the death
penalty because we know we should be punished for our sins. the reason europe has gone for this universal declaration of human rights and does not pass the death penalty is because europe has followed freud more than jesus. here is what i was astounded with. the book brought out his argument with affirmative action and why affirmative action -- i guess it must've been in the 1960's or early 1970's -- he is reasoning. he said, my grandfather came as an immigrant to this country and worked very hard and my father worked very hard. the children have worked very hard. i am not responsible for slavery in this country. it is like our people came and made something of ourselves. it is that disconnect, and you hear people making arguments all
the time, why don't these people go out and get jobs. i learned to write when i went back to the suburbs and i hear, don't they know they should keep their children in school? why don't they get jobs? why don't they hold their families together? i've got to find a way to tell stories about what happens to you when you are struggling against all this. >> that is right. the absence of shame is the reason why people feel comfortable elevating a narrative of individuals like that. you don't feel any shame about what your grandfather did or your great grandfather did. you just feel pride. the way they were able to succeed -- because we are not telling the truth about how our great-grandfathers were lynching people. how are great great-grandfathers were enslaving people.
how they were benefiting from exclusion and the lack of competition by excluding people on the basis of race. they were living at the time when they did not have to deal with the complexities of a racially integrated workforce. we don't deal with shame very well. we go to the pride narrative, which is what we're doing with our civil rights stories. that is why we -- it sounds harsh. >> just to acknowledge. >> you have to shame this country into confronting the idiocy of that kind of story. because we have not forced people to do it. we suffer. the united states supreme court two years before the 50th anniversary that we don't need the voting rights act anymore. a case brought by a state in alabama, where they never said
we want black people voting. they've been saying that they do not want black people voting since black people first arrived on this continent. there has never been a time when alabama says anything other than, we do not want you voting. they were saying it with all these different strategies. we did not say we hate black people for a really long time and we should now get the benefit of not having these restrictions of protections. it is a very twisted narrative. i see the same thing in the criminal justice system. i see the same thing in the death penalty. we have these innocent people that you and i know who are exonerated and we do not own up to what we did. we tried to kill them for 33 years. we don't taking a responsibility for that. we have to create a way of talking to people that i think fosters a more honest awareness of our obligations to be a little more humble. we have to develop a sense of
humility in this country. i go to germany and i like what i see. i like that it is a country soberly trying to reflect on the legacy of the holocaust. there is an awareness that we can't go back, we can't repeat. in this country, we don't do that. that allows arrogant people, arrogant judges, to say prideful things that add to the injury. it is hurtful to hear some of these narratives. we have to change that narrative, but still be hopeful. you're right, this conversation will make you discouraged, make you worry. i think one of the great challenges we have -- and this is why the church should be more vibrant and out there leading -- is we still have to find ways to be helpful. i am persuaded that in justice prevails where hopelessness persists. there is nothing they can do to better advance -- in that incarceration.
to have a conversation about what it means to helping the poor. when they do that, they allow themselves to get comfortable with these realities. we have to be willing to make them hopeful. >> you know -- i have accompanied six people to execution -- here's some hope. people are good. it's not like they've really thought this through and have come out racist or saying, we have to kill the criminals. they have not thought very much about it. my hope -- i don't know i can still be doing this if i was getting out there and going into all these places, texas, alabama, everywhere and people
were so closed, rigid, and racist. they do want to reflect on what we are doing in this library tonight, this community discourse, where we are taking something and reading about it, talking about it, digging deeper into it. this kind of communal growth, in terms of understanding who we are, counters, don't you think, the individualism. when people do something wrong, we say we have to hold that individual accountable. were not good like europe is or other countries. they asked, what did we do wrong? we blame the individual and punish the individual. >> that is right. that is why contextualizing is key. what is breaking my heart -- and my clients have gotten younger and younger, and we are now doing this whole effort around children and what motivated us to get involved in this is that the age of our countries getting younger. we have children that are born into violent families.
they are born into violent neighborhoods. they go to violent schools. they are chased by violent gangs. we get involved by jumping on these kids pick we call them violent offenders. we beat them up and want to throw them away. the inability to recognize what that violence has done to them, the inability, unwillingness, to talk about what that trauma has done, what it means to live in a community where you're dealing with violence and poor schools and threats and abuse and violence all the time, that in difference to that is what will to be ashamed of. we've got to find a way to contextualize all that. children, 13 and 14 without
parole, they want change. they are hungry for guidance and nurturing and all those things that all children want. our unwillingness to provided to them is a reflection of the way in which these narratives have emerged. we had these people in the 1980's talking about how some children are not children, they look like, they talk like kids, but these are not children. these criminologists say they are super predators. we use that term to generalize, then we turned it into law. we lower the age of trying children as adults. we created a world where we now have 250,000 people in adult jails and prisons who are convicted of crimes when they were children.